World stocks, euro, oil jump as EU summit delivers

June 30, 2012 | 09:23
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World stock markets surged Friday, the euro jumped against the dollar, and oil prices rocketed after a key EU summit delivered surprise emergency measures to fight the eurozone debt crisis.

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. World stock markets surged Friday, the euro jumped against the dollar, and oil prices rocketed after a key EU summit delivered surprise emergency measures to fight the eurozone debt crisis. (AFP Photo/Andrew Burton)

The Madrid and Rome markets were the biggest gainers -- and Italy's and Spain's government bond yields also fell sharply -- after emergency aid for both was announced following marathon talks in Brussels to rescue the eurozone.

But gains were strong all around: in New York, the Dow jumped 2.2 percent and the Nasdaq rose 3.0 percent on newfound confidence in the embattled single currency area.

"It was all about Europe once again, but the news was actually good this time," said Joe Bell of Schaeffer's Investment Research.

"Euro-zone leaders came to agreement on several key issues that investors hope will improve financial conditions in the region."

In Europe, the markets were equally ebullient. Frankfurt's DAX 30 rose 4.3 percent and Paris' CAC 40 soared 4.8 percent. Milan rocketed up by 6.6 percent, Madrid by 5.7 percent and Athens also by 5.7 percent.

Among individual shares, Spanish bank BBVA soared 9.0 percent, French lender BNP Paribas rallied 9.7 percent and Deutsche Bank won 5.91 percent.

Only London was drab; the benchmark FTSE 100 ended the day adding just 1.4 percent tempered by a series of banking scandals.

Earlier Asia stock markets gained between one and two percent helped by the eurozone summit news.

In the late night deal, the eurozone leaders agreed to use emergency funds to support ailing banks directly and to ease pressure on governments' debt burdens.

They also agreed to inject 120 billion euros ($150 billion) of stimulus money into the suffering euro area economy.

EU president Herman Van Rompuy hailed the deal as a "real breakthrough" that would calm financial markets and reshape the eurozone to prevent a recurrence of the debt crisis.

"The key breakthrough at the euro area summit was to pave the way for a banking union that would ultimately be back-stopped by euro area collective funds, helping to break the link between sovereigns and national banking systems," said Julian Callow of Barclays Research.

"The summit's conclusions are another reminder that the complex economic, financial, fiscal and political challenges can be addressed only incrementally, with full attention to conditionality, accountability and sequencing."

The impact spilled through other markets. Gold gained 3.1 percent to just under $1,600 an ounce. Oil prices rocketed: New York's West Texas Intermediate contract soared $7.27 to $84.96 a barrel, while in London, Brent surged $6.44 to $97.80.

The euro shot up more than two cents against the dollar Friday after the summit; at 2100 GMT, it was trading at $1.2654, up from $1.2442 late Thursday. The safe-haven yen sagged, falling to 101.02 per euro and 79.83 per dollar.

"The low expectations in place the past few days surrounding the eurozone summit were tossed aside with ease on Friday, as new measures proposed prompted a massive short-covering rally in the euro," said Christopher Vecchio of Daily FX.

Doubts over the execution of the measures agreed at the summit remained, and traders said markets would return their focus to that in the coming weeks.

"It needs to be seen however if these developments and measures are indeed enough to calm markets long-term, with periphery bond yields establishing a firm downward trend, or if relief is only temporary." said ETX Capital trader Markus Huber.

Justin Harper, market strategist for IG Markets Singapore, called the oil price surge a short term rally.

"It could fizzle out because people have seen that there's still a lot of infighting between all the different member states," he said.

"They're attacking the short-term issues... there's still a lot of issues to be resolved."


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